Here at Kijiji, we devote significant resources to keeping the site clean from scam ads. In addition to our automated systems, we have a team of devoted scam finders working around the clock, reviewing both ads that have yet to be posted and those which have been flagged as suspicious by the community. However, those seeking work on Kijiji (or on any website) should be aware of some red flags to look out for.
Follow These Tips to Avoid Scams in your Online Job Search
Job is too good to be true. Employment scams are usually written to be appealing, generally offering far more than the standard pay for a strait forward or generic sounding position, often stating that little or no experience is necessary. These job ads frequently are geared towards those who may have difficulty finding work, and emphasize personal qualities or values such as trustworthiness rather than specific skills. Work from home positions are also common offerings. If you read the ad and react with “Wow – this job sounds amazing!” keep your guard up, and ask lots of questions.
No information (or very little information) on the company or individual who is hiring. If you encounter ads on your job search that contain hardly any information about the company hiring, stay alert. While some agencies have legitimate job postings and cannot reveal identifying details about the company, they should be able to give you details on the actual position, and their agency, even if information on the hiring company is off-limits.
A lot of questions about you. In almost all cases, your resume (and possibly also a cover letter) should be more than enough information for a potential employer. Questions about your SIN number before an interview, as well as requests for passport, address, or credit information are major red flags that the job is not legitimate, and could be an attempt at identity theft.
Foreign symbols or references. Kijiji is a local, face to face site – and any indication that the “job” or individual may not be located in Canada are big reasons to be suspicious. These might include currency symbols or references to being paid in another currency (which is actually illegal in Canada), mentions of geographical locations which are nowhere near where the position is supposedly located, or strange language that seems like it might have been put through a translation service.
Any requests for money. A legitimate employer will be looking to pay you, and should not be asking for money. If you need to purchase anything for a job (such as a uniform), typically these are taken out of a first pay cheque, not requested up front. Also be aware of “refund” requests after “overpayment” after your first pay, as this is a common scam (the original cheque bounces after the money is sent “back”, leaving the victim with less money, and still jobless).
Tall tales. If a job involves a lengthy story on why the job is required and why the poster can’t meet you face to face, and the poster evades your questions or refuses to answer requests for more information, keep your guard up.
If you replied to an ad and these red flags come up during correspondence, please let us know by sending the details to our help desk. If you come across an ad on site that is suspicious, please report it by clicking the link in the upper right corner of the ad. If your job hunt brings you into situations or exchanges that make you feel uncomfortable for any reason, trust your gut, and don’t be afraid to reach out to the trust and safety team if you have more questions.